Shotokan Karate-Do International
Japan Karate Association Connecticut
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UConn Training Schedule
Beginner and advanced classes for men, women and children are held at Hawley Armory (near the library at the center of campus). Visitors are welcome to come train with us or observe classes.
The spring training schedule is:
Location Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Sunday HAWLEY ARMORY GYM 7:00-8:30pm - 7:00-8:30pm - 7:00-8:30pm 5:30-7:00pm
KARATE-DO (The "empty hands way")
The "kara" of karate means "to render oneself empty". Master Gichin Funakoshi, the "Father of Japanese Karate", wrote, "The student of karate-do must render his mind empty of selfishness and wickedness in an effort to react appropriately toward anything he may encounter". Karate's roots go back to the Shao Lin and other ancient fighting arts of China, where physical training methods were used to build the endurance and strength required to carry out the rigid discipline of the religion. These arts eventually spread to Okinawa and then to Japan where karate was refined into its present-day form. In 1955, the Japan Karate Association (JKA) was established with Master Funakoshi as chief instructor. The JKA trained and sent instructors throughout the world, which is one the the primary reasons karate is as well known and popular as it is today.
Master Gichin Funakoshi
As a form of physical exercise, karate is almost without equal. Utilizing all parts of the body, karate training increases the strength, speed, stamina, coordination, reflexes, and balance of the karateka (student of karate). It is the ultimate art of unarmed self-defense. Like knowing how to swim, you always have it with you. However, Master Funakoshi saw karate not only as a means of conditioning or self-defense, but also as a way to build character and mental discipline. The karateka is taught not only the physical techniques, but also how to use his skills with wisdom and discretion. Among the many mental benefits of karate training are improved self-awareness, confidence, discipline and emotional control.
The Japan Karate Association
and the UConn JKA Karate Club
With millions of members in over 100 countries, the Japan Karate Association (JKA) is the largest martial arts organization in the world. The JKA teaches karate in the traditional Japanese way, emphasizing strong stances and powerful basic technique as well as mastery of kata (form) and kumite (sparring). In the United States, the JKA has a main school in each region which trains instructors and ensures the maintenance of high standards in all of the JKA branch schools. Shotokan Karate-Do International, which is based in New York City, is headquarters for all JKA clubs in the region. It is under the leadership of Master Masataka Mori, who is 9th dan (9th degree black belt) and one of the highest ranking karate masters in the world. The UConn JKA Karate Club was founded in September, 1972 and is dedicated to the continuation of traditional karate-do as a physical and mental discipline designed to improve the overall quality of the student's life.
Master Masataka Mori
THE DOJO KUN ("School Code")
The Dojo Kun (in brown type below) is recited at each practice (the black type is a more literal translation of the original Japanese). It serves to remind students that karate-do is not just about training the body, but also about perfecting character and attitude. It also reminds students that the physical and mental strength learned through karate must be accompanied by a moral code of respect and restraint.
SEEK PERFECTION OF CHARACTER
Strive for completion of character
Defend the path of truth
Foster the spirit of effort
Respect the principles of etiquette
REFRAIN FROM VIOLENT BEHAVIOR
Guard against impetuous courage
See also Sensei Funakoshi's Twenty Precepts (the Niju Kun)
And more on Funakoshi's ideas on how to practice karate from the JKA Boston webpage . . .
UConn JKA Instructors:
Our chief instructor, Sensei Robert Jacobs (6th dan), is the senior ranking JKA instructor in New England. Jacobs began his karate training at UConn in 1973 and became its instructor in 1976. In 1991, he completed the intensive advanced JKA instructor training and certification course taught by Master Mori in New York City. Jacobs is twice (1979 & 83) Shotokan Karate-Do America mens kumite (sparring) champion. In national championships (AAKF) he has competed on many teams with 1st place wins in kumite (1985) and kata (1990 & 1991). He also competed in two world championships (JKA Shoto Cup, Tokyo 1992 and ITKF World Championships, Montreal 1993). He now judges in national and world competitions (including World Shoto Cup Championships in Philadelphia 1994, Osaka 1996, Paris 1998, Sydney 2006 & Pattaya 2011).
Jacobs continues to teach karate-do in the strict, traditional fashion - emphasizing that the development of spirit and character are as important as that of technique. In his more than 35 years of teaching, over 150 of his students have attained the rank of shodan (1st degree black belt) or above.
Assistant Instructors who are currently teaching at UConn are Tom Hine, Andrew Bakoledis and Mike Jacobs (all 4th dan). All are certified JKA instructors and are veterans of many regional and national competitions including 1st place wins nationally in team kata (1990 & 91) and 2nd in team kumite (1988). All have also competed in JKA World Shoto Cup Championships. Andrew Bakoledis, Mike Jacobs and Alumni Joe Vincente were on the U.S. Kata Team that made the finals (top 8) in the most recent World Championship (Aug 2011 - Pattaya, Thailand. See YouTube videos of the team here: Semi-finals - Kanku sho and Finals - Meikyo). For photos of UConn JKA Certified Instructors click here...
Schedule of UConn and Regional Events
Feb 15 Special Self-Defense Training & New Member Party @ UConn Feb 24 Instructor Training @ New York Mar 8 Video Session & Party @ UConn Mar 17 Instructor Training @ New York Mar 17-23 Semester Break @ UConn (Training as Usual) Mar 22-23 Montreal Spring Camp Mar 30 Annual Team Shiai (Competition) @ Montille Apr 12-14 Shotokan Karate-Do International Spring Training Camp @ UConn Apr 27 Apr 30 Kyu Examination for Rank @ Trinity College May 1 Final Practical Exam for AH 1200 (Written Exam Due) Summer Break Training as Usual @ UConn July 11-14 July 19 Old Timers Reunion Practice @ UConn July 20 UConn JKA Karate Club 40th Year Reunion @ Storrs, CT
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